Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 Writers: Bright Lights that have been Extinquished

The Good and the Bad. The good, of course, is that there were a phenomenal number of great books in 2008. The Bad is that we lost a lot of wonderful writers in the mystery community. B.V. Lawson of In Reference to Murder has a pretty complete list.

Because I could not stop for Death,
He kindly stopped for me;
The carriage held but just ourselves
And Immortality.
--Emily Dickinson

I note several friends and acquaintances in the group: Elaine Flinn, Tony Hillerman, Ed Hoch, Arthur Lyons, Meg O'Brien, JanWillem van de Wetering. May they all rest in peace.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Hillary Waugh, R.I.P.

Hillary Waugh, pioneer of the police procedural, died on December 8. Last Seen Wearing, his debut novel, was on just about every top 100 mystery list. Hillary Waugh's Guide to Mysteries and Mystery Writing is an important book for the mystery reference shelf. NYTimes obit.

New Year's Mysteries

2009 is almost upon us, and I wish you a safe, prosperous and happy New Year. I have a short list of a few books that take place on or around New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. Enjoy.

Harris, Lee. The New Year’s Eve Murder
Meier, Leslie. New Year’s Eve Murder
Sayers, Dorothy. The Nine Tailors (begins on New Year’s Eve)
Keene, Carolyn. The Chinese New Year Mystery (not the same date but a New Year's celebration)
Todd, Charles. A Long Shadow.
Padura, Leonardo. Havana Blue (stars with a New Year’s Eve hangover)
Deaver, Jeffery. The Devil’s Teardrop.
Cleeves, Anne. Raven Black
Jance, J.A. Name Withheld.
Kirkwood, James. P.S. Your Cat is Dead. (not really a mystery but a very good read!)
Farjeon, J. Jefferson. Death in Fancy Dress (The Fancy Dress Ball, U.k.)
Meredith, David William. The Christmas Card Murders

Monday, December 22, 2008

More Christmas Mysteries

Karen Meek of Euro Crime fame--what a great blog!- does a series on Christmas Reads every year. Be sure to check out Euro Crime for her comments. I'll be updating my Mistletoe Mystery list, but to save you time, here are a few more titles:
Holidays are Murder by Charlotte Douglas, The Dead of Winter by Lisa Appignanesi, Voices by Arnaldur Indridason. I loved this novel. I forgot to list it on the Christmas list, probably because I forgot it takes place during the holidays. It's dark, like all of his novels, but an excellent read. Not sure how many more days and books (12 days of Christmas) she'll be doing, but be sure to subscribe to Euro Crime.

Please send me--or post--any other titles for the list!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Janet Rudolph on Jungle Red Writers Blog

Want to find out more about me (Janet Rudolph)? and about 6 fabulous writers? Go to Jungle Red Writers. Hallie Ephron interviewed me yesterday on this great Blog. O.K., I'm not all that interesting, but check out the other interviews and blogs and websites.

Hallie Ephron just got a starred review in PW for her new stand-alone Never Tell a Lie (HarperCollins 1/09). Rhys Bowen is Guest of Honor at Left Coast Crime 2009. Other members of Jungle Red Writers: Rosemary Harris, Hank Phillippi Ryan, Jan Brogan and Roberta Isleib.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Chanukah (Hanukkah) Mysteries

Chanukah is a minor holiday in the Jewish calendar, so it's not surprising that there are not a lot of Hanukkah mysteries. I'm using all the different transliterated spellings for Chanukah here, in the hopes that someone will come up with a few more titles. I found a few, and although this list doesn't even begin to compare with my Christmas list of mysteries, I hope you'll find it helpful. Feel free to send any titles to add to this list.

Festival of Deaths by Jane Haddam
Chanukah Guilt by Ilene Schneider

Children's Hanukah Mysteries:
Rabbi Rocketpower and the Mystery of the Missing Menorahs - A
Hanukkah Humdinger! by Rabbi Susan Abramson and Aaron Dvorkin and Ariel DiOrio (thanks to Lois Hirt for sending this title)

Short Stories:
"Mom Lights a Candle" by James Yaffe, appeared in Mystery: The Best of 2002, ed. by Jon L. Breen.
For more info on Jewish short story mysteries, check out Steven Steinbock who blogs on Criminal Brief, the Mystery Short Story Web Log Project.

Here's a children's software mystery game: Who Stole Hanukkah? offered in five languages: English, Hebrew, Russian, French and Spanish

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Christmas Mysteries: Mistletoe Mysteries and More

With the holidays upon us, I thought I'd post a Christmas reading lists for your enjoyment. In the days to come, I'll try to add Chanukah mysteries. Suggestions welcome. The first issue of Mystery Readers Journal in 2009 will focus on Crime for the Holidays. Mystery Readers Journal is a review periodical with reviews, articles and Author! Author! essays. Have a wonderful Holiday Season.

Adamson, Lydia. A Cat in the Manger, A Cat in the Wings, A Cat on Jingle Bell Rock, A Cat Under the Mistletoe
Albert, Susan Wittig. Mistletoe Man
Allen, Michael. Spence and the Holiday Murders
Andrews, Donna. Six Geese A-Slaying
Appignanesi, Agatha.The Dead of Winter
Atherton, Nancy. Aunt Dimity's Christmas

Atkins, Ace. Leavin' Trunk Blues
Babson, Marian. Twelve Deaths of Christmas
Barron, Stephanie. Jane and the Wandering Eye
Battison, Brian. The Christmas Bow Murder
Baldacci, David. The Christmas Train
Ballard, Mignon F. Deadly Promise, Hark! The Herald Angel Screamed
Barnard, Robert. Death in a Cold Climate, The Habit of Widowhood
Barron, Stephanie. Jane and the Wandering Eye
Battison, Brian. The Christmas Bow Murder
Beaton, M.C. Death of A Snob, A Highland Christmas, Kissing Christmas Goodbye
Berenson, Laurien. Jingle Bell Bark
Bernhardt, William. The Midnight Before Christmas
Berry, Linda. (and others) The Last Noel
Bishop, Claudia. A Carol for a Corpse
Blake, Nicholas. The Corpse in the Snowman, The Smiler With the Knife, Thou Shell of Death
Blanc, Nero. A Crossworder's Delight, A Crossworder's Gift, A Crossworder's Holiday, Wrapped Up in Crosswords
Borthwick, J. S. Dude on Arrival
Boyle, Thomas. Post-Mortem Effects
Bramble, Forbes. Dead of Winter
Braun, Lilian Jackson. The Cat Who Turned On and Off
Brett, Simon. The Christmas Crimes at Puzzle Manor Brewer, Steve (and others) The Last Noel
Brightwell, Emily. Mrs. Jeffries and the Feast of St. Stephen
Brown, Rita Mae. Rest in Pieces, Santa Clawed
Buchanan, Edna. The Ice Maiden
Burley, W. J. Death i
n Willow Pattern, Wycliffe and the Quiet Virgin
Byerrun, Ellen. Grave Apparel
Cairns, Alison. New Year Resolution
Cameron, Dana (and others) Sugarplums and Scandal
Carl, Joanna. The Chocolate Bear Burglary
Caunitz, William J. Exceptional Clearance
Challinor, C. S. Christmas is Murder
Chaput, W. J. The Man on the Train
Chastain, Thomas. 911
Chaze, Elliott. Goodbye Goliath
Chesbro, George C. Second Horseman Out of Eden
Christie, Agatha. Hercule Poirot’s Christmas (Also published as Murder for Christmas and Holiday for Murder)
Christmas, Joyce. Dying Well
Churchill, Jill. Farewell to Yarns, The Merchant of Menace, From Here to Paternity
Clark, Carol Higgins. Iced
Clark, Mary Higgins. All Though the Night, Silent Night, Deck the halls. With Carol Higgins Clark, He Sees You when Your Sleeping With Carol Higgins Clark, The Christmas Thief. With Carol Higgins Clark, Santa Cruise. With Carol Higgins Clark.
Dashing through the snow. With Carol Higgins Clark.
Cohen, Charles. Silver Linings
Collins, Max Allen. Blue Christmas and Other Holiday Homicides, No Cure for Death
Colt, Jennifer. The Con Artist of Catalina Island
Conant, Susan. Gone to the Dogs
Coward, Mat (and others) The Last Noel
Craig, Alisa. Murder Goes Mumming
Constantine, K.C. Upon Some Midnights Clear
Craft, Michael. Body Language
Craig, Philip R. A Deadly Vineyard Holiday: A Martha’s Vineyard Mystery
Daheim, Mary. The Alpine Christmas, Nutty as a Fruitcake
D'Amato, Barbara. Hard Christmas
Dams, Jeanne M. The Body in the Transept, Indigo Christmas
Davidson, Diane Mott . Sweet Revenge New Addition This Year!
Davis, Mildred B. Tell Them What's Her Name Called, Three Minutes to Midnight
Dawson, Janet. Nobody's Child
DeAndrea, William L. Killed on the Ice
Dentinger, Jane. The Queen is Dead
Dexter, Colin. The Secret of Annexe 3
Dobson, Joanne. Quieter Than Sleep
Donnelly, Deborah. Died to Match, May the Best Man Die
Douglas, Carole Nelson. Cat in a Golden Garland
Douglas, Charlotte. Holidays are Murder
Drummond, John Keith. 'Tis the Season to be Dying
Douglas, Carole Nelson. Cat in a Golden Garland: A Midnight Louie Mystery
Dunn, Carola. Mistletoe and Murder
Eberhart, Mignon G. Postmark Murder
Eddenden, A. E. A Good Year for Murder
Egan, Lesley. Crime for Christmas
Randy Lee. Then Came Christmas
Erskine, Margaret. A Graveyard Plot
Estleman, Loren D. The Glass Highway
Evanovich, Janet. Visions of Sugar Plums
Fairstein, Linda A. The Deadhouse , The Crime and the Crystal, A Small World of Murder
Ferrars, E.X. Smoke Without Fire
Ferris, Monica. Crewel Yule
Fluke, Joanne. Candy Cane Murder , Sugar Cookie Murder
Fletcher, Jessica. A Little Yuletide Murder
Fraser, Anthea. The Nine Bright Shiners
Frazer, Margaret. The Servant's Tale, The Widow's Tale
Freydont, Shelley. A Merry Little Murder
Frommer, Sara Hoskinson. Witness in Bishop Hill
Gaardner, Jostein. The Christmas Mystery
Gano, John. Inspector Proby's Christmas
Garner, James Finn. Politically Correct Holiday Stories: For an Enlightened Yuletide Season
George, Anne. Murder on a Bad Hair Day
Giroux, E. X. Death for a Dietician
Gorman, Ed. Murder on the Aisle
Gouze, Roger. A Quiet Game of Bambu
Grafton, Sue. “E” is for Evidence
Heather. The Last Noel
Granger, Ann. A Season for Murder
Chris Grabenstein. Hell for the Holidays: A Christopher Miller Holiday Thriller
Graves, Sarah. Wreck the Halls:A Home Repair is Homicide Mystery
Greeley, Andrew. The Bishop and the Three Kings, The Man with a Load of Mischief, The Old Fox Deceiv'd
Guest, Judith. Killing Time in St. Cloud
Granger, Ann. A Season for Murder
Graves, Sarah. Wreck the Halls
Greeley, Andrew. Star Bright! A Christmas Story, The Bishop and the Three Kings
Green, Christine. Deadly Partners
Grimes, Martha. Jerusalem Inn
Haddam, Jane. Not a Creature Was Stirring, A Stillness in Bethlehem,
Hager, Jean. The Last Noel
Haines, Carolyn. Buried Bones
Hall, Parnell. A Puzzle in a Pear Tree
Hall, Robert Lee. Benjamin Franklin and a Case of Christmas Murder
Harris, Charlaine. Shakespeare’s Christmas
Hardwick, Richard. The Season to be Deadly
Hare, Cyril. An English Murder
Karen Harper. The Queene’s Christmas
Harris, Lee. The Christmas Night Murder
Harris, Charlaine. Shakespeare’s Christmas
Hart, Carolyn G. Sugarplum Dead
Harvey, John. Cold Light
Hess, Joan. A Holly, Jolly Murder, O Little Town of Maggody
Heyer, Georgette. Envious Casca.
Hill, Reginald. Death's Jest Book
Hilton, John Buxton. Death in Midwinter
Hinkemeyer, Michael. A Time to Reap
Hodgkin, Marion Rous. Dead Indeed
Holland, Isabelle. A Fatal Advent
Holmes, Dee. Silent Night [anthology]
Howie, Edith. Murder for Christmas
Howlett, John. The Christmas Spy
Hughes, Mary Ellen. Wreath of Deception
Hunter, Evan. Come Winter
Hunter, Fred. Ransom for a Holiday, 'Tis the Season for Murder
Indridason, Arnaldur. Voices.
Jahn, Michael. Murder on Fifth Avenue
Jeffers, H. Paul. Murder on Mike
Jordan, Cathleen. A Carol in the Dark
Jordan, Jennifer. Murder Under the Mistletoe.
Kaplan, Arthur. A Killing for Charity
Kaye, M. M. Death in the Andamans
Kellerman, Faye. Sacred and Profane
Kelley, Lee Charles. 'Twas the Bite Before Christmas
Kelly, Mary. The Christmas Egg
Kelner, Toni L.P. Mad as the Dickens
Kendrick, Stephen. Night Watch: A Long-Lost Adventure in Which Sherlock Holmes Meets Father Brown
King, Laurie R. A Monstrous Regiment of Women
Kingsbury, Kate. No Clue at the Inn, Ringing in Murder, Shrouds of Holly, Slay Bells
Henry Kisor. Season’s Revenge
Koch, Edward I. Murder on 34th Street
Koontz, Dean R. Mister Murder, Santa’s Twin
Lake, M.D. A Gift for Murder, Grave Choices
Landreth, Marsha. The Holiday Murders
Langley, Bob. Death Stalk
Langton, Jane. The Shortest Day: Murder at the Revels
Lathen, Emma. Banking on Death
Lawrence, David. Cold Kill
Leach, Christopher. A Killing Frost
Levine, Joan. The Santa Claus Mystery
Lewin, Michael Z. The Enemies Within
Livingston, Nancy. Quiet Murder
Lockridge, Richard. Dead Run
London, Cait. (and others) Sugarplums and Scandal
Luber, Philip. Deadly Convictions
MacLeod, Charlotte. Rest You Merry; —, ed.Christmas Stalkings: Tales of Yuletide Murder
MacDonald, John D. Pale Gray for Guilt
MacLeod, Charlotte. The Convivial Codfish, Murder Goes Mumming, Rest You Merry
MacPherson, Rett. A Comedy of Heirs
Macpherson, Suzanne (and others) Sugarplums and Scandal
Malliet, G. M. Death of a Cozy Writer
Malmont, Valerie. Death, Snow, and Mistletoe
Marks, Jeffrey. Canine Christmas
Maron, Margaret. Corpus Christmas
Marsh, Ngaio. Tied Up in Tinsel
McBain, Ed. And All Through the House, Downtown, Ghosts, Sadie When She Died
McClure, James. The Gooseberry Fool
McGinley, Patrick. Goosefoot
McGown, Jill. Murder at the Old Vicarage
McKevett, G.A. Cooked Goose, Poisoned Tarts
Meier, Leslie. The Christmas Cookie Murder, Mistletoe Murder
Meredith, David W. The Christmas Card Murders
Meredith, D. R. Murder by Sacrilege
Miner, Valerie. Murder in the English Department,
Moore, Christopher. The Stupidest Angel: A Heartwarming Tale of Christmas Terror
David Morrell. The Spy Who Came for Christmas
Moyes, Patricia. Season of Snows and Sins
Muller, Marcia. There's Nothing to be Afraid Of
Murphy, Shirley Rousseau. Cat Deck the Halls
Nabb, Magdalen. Death of an Englishman
Neel, Janet. Death's Bright Angel
O'Connell, Carol. Judas Child
O'Marie, Carol Anne. Advent of Dying, Murder in Ordinary Time, A Novena for Murder
Stewart O’Nan., Last Night at the Lobster
Page, Katherine Hall. The Body in the Big Apple, The Body in the Bouillon
Palmer, William. The Dons and Mr. Dickens
Papazoglou, Orania. Charisma
Rich, Radiant. Slaughter
Parker, Gary E. Death Stalks a Holiday
Parker, Raymond B. The Widening Gyre
Paul, Barbara. A Chorus of Detectives
Parker, Robert B. The Widening Gyre
Pearson, Carol Lynn. A Stranger For Christmas
Perry, Anne. A Christmas Beginning, A Christmas Grace, A Christmas Guest, A Christmas Journey. A Christmas Secret, A Christmas Visitor, Silence in Hanover Close
Peters, Elizabeth. He Shall Thunder in the Sky, Trojan Gold
Peters, Ellis. A Rare Benedictine, The Raven in the Foregate
Plunkett, Susan. Silent Night [anthology]
Pomidor, Bill. Mind Over Murder, Snowbound
Pryce, Malcolm. Don't Cry For Me Aberystwyth New Addition This Year!
Pulver, Monica. Original Sin
Purser, Ann. Murder on Monday
Queen, Ellery.The Finishing Stroke
Raphael, Lev. Burning Down the House: A Nick Hoffman Novel
Ray, Robert J. Merry Christmas Murdock
Riggs, John R. Haunt of the Nightingale
Ripley, Ann. The Christmas Garden Affair
Robb, J.D. Holiday in Death
Roberts, Gillian. The Mummer’s Curse, Philly Stakes
Sheila. On Strike for Christmas
Robinson, Peter. Past Reason Hated
Rowe, Jennifer. Death in Store
Rubino, Jane. Homicide For the Holidays
Ruell, Patrick. Red Christmas
Sanders, Lawrence. The Fourth Deadly Sin
Sawyer, Corinne Holt. Ho Ho Homicide
Sefton, Maggie. Fleece Navidad
Serafin, David. Christmas Rising
Shannon, Dell. No Holiday For Crime
Sibley, Celestine. Spider in the Sink
Simenon, Georges. Maigret's Christmas
Slater, Susan [et al] Crooks, Crimes and Christmas
Smith, Barbara Burnett. Mistletoe From Purple Sage, 'Tis the Season for Murder (with Fred Hunter)
Smith, Frank. Fatal Flaw
Smith, Joan. Don't Leave Me This Way
Smith, Terrence. The Devil and Webster Daniels
Smoak, Amanda. Generals' Row
Sprinkle, Patricia H. A Mystery Bred in Buckhead
Strohmeyer, Sarah. Bubbles All the Way
Symons, Julian. The Detling Secret
Talley, Marcia. Occasion of Revenge
Taylor, Elizabeth Atwood. The Cable Car Murder
Taylor, Sarah Stewart. O' Artful Death
Thompson, Carlene. The Way You Look Tonight
Tourney, Leonard D. Knaves Templar
Tremayne, Peter. The Haunted Abbot
Trocheck, Kathy. A Midnight Clear
Underwood, Michael. A Party to Murder
Unsworth, Barry. Morality Play
VanLeeuwen, Jean. The Great Christmas Kidnaping Caper
Victor, Cynthia. What Matters Most
Viets, Elaine. Murder With All the Trimmings
Wainwright, John. The Life and Times of Christmas Calvert...Assassin
Walsh, Thomas. The Resurrection Man
Ward, Donald. Our Little Secret
Weir, Charlene. A Cold Christmas
Wingfield, R.D. Frost at Christmas
Wolzien, Valerie. Deck the Halls With Murder

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Mystery Readers: Members in the News

Until the latest issue of the Mystery Readers Journal, I updated Members in the News quarterly in the hardcopy Journal. We are no longer including MRI Mayhem in the hardcopy issues, so we can give more space to articles, reviews and Author! Author! essays. So I decided to update Members in the News more regularly on my Blog. You can also find this information on the Mystery Readers website under Members in the News.

Here's what some of our members are up to!

TIM MALEENEY’s new mystery Greasing the Pinata is just out. Tim will be on tour. Check his schedule at:

HAILEY LIND tells us that her publisher has put her next three Annie Kincaid Art Lover’s books on hiatus. However, she has TWO new series coming out over the next two years: Secondhand Spirits, the first in a new witchcraft series, will be released July 2009. If Walls Could Talk, the first in the Sophie Tanner House Flipping Mysteries, will be coming out in 2010. Both will be released under Penguin's Obsidian label, and under the new pseudonym, Juliet Blackwell (check out her blog at: for more information on the name change).

MAAN MEYERS, the the pseudonym of Annette and Marty Meyers have a new historical mystery set in turn-of the century New York. The Organ Grinder came out in October from Five Star/Gale.

HALLIE EPHRON has NEVER TELL A LIE, a novel of suspense, coming out from William Morrow in January. Hallie’s 1001 Books for Every Mood is one of my all-time favorite gift books. It’s also a great book for every reader, so consider getting a copy for yourself. You’ll find all time favorites, the mood pairings are spot-on. For writers in the group, don’t miss Writing and Selling Your Mystery Novel: How to Knock ‘em Dead with Style. Ephron is truly a woman of many talents. For more info and fun, go to Jungle Red, Ephron’s blog she shares with Rosemary Harris, Hank Philippi Ryan, Jan Brogan and Roberta Isleib.

KRIS NERI: Hilliard & Harris just published a collection of Kris Neri's short stories, THE ROSE IN THE SNOW: TALES OF MISCHIEF AND MAYHEM. The collection contains some new stories, some of Kris' personal favorites, and her two Derringer Award-winners. Kris will also be teaching a private mystery and thriller structure class for the Guppy Chapter of Sisters in Crime. The six-week class, which will debut in late January 2009, is only open to Guppy members, and will feature Kris' unique approaches to structuring crime novels.

SANDI AULT, author of the WILD mystery series, has Wild Sorrow coming Wild out from Berkley Prime Crime in March. Sandi’s Wild Inferno was chosen as one of the Best Books of 2008 by PW. Wild Indigo won the Mary Higgins Clark Award in 2008.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

More Scandinavian Crime Articles

I can't wait to see Kenneth Branagh as Kurt Wallander. We in the U.S. have to wait to get our British shows. I'm a big fan of Scandinavian novels, and the Mystery Readers Journal had a great issue on Crime in Cold Climates: Scandinavian Mysteries. I thought I'd link some recent articles on Cold Crime.

Boyd Tonkin: Beyond Mankell: our fiends in the north

The Nordic Mystery Boom: Forget Holmes, Marple and Poirot. The Scandinavians have a clue by Joe Queenan

Crime Pays in a law-abiding Land There are numerous Blogs devoted to Scandinavian crime and well worth a look.

Meg O'Brien

From Nancy Baker Jacobs:
Meg O'Brien died on Saturday, Dec. 6, of complications following heart surgery. She had been living in Houston, Texas, recently to be near her daughter Kaiti and granddaughter Emily. Born in New Jersey, Meg also lived in several California cities and in Washington State over the past couple of decades. She was the author of the Jessica James mystery series and numerous suspense novels. Most recently she wrote under contract for MIRA Books. Meg loved writing and always told a good story that entertained her many readers.

Here's one eerie event her daughter Amy thought mystery writers might appreciate. Twenty-four hours after Meg died, her son's cell phone rang and its readout indicated that the call was coming from Meg's cell phone. Her children later found Meg's cell phone packed inside her suitcase and, indeed, its readout indicated that it had placed that particular call at that particular time, but no one can explain just how or why. Certainly Meg would have enjoyed contemplating this kind of mystery.

Meg O'Brien leaves behind five children, four grandchildren and several great-grandchildren, along with her many friends and a host of fans, all of whom will miss her greatly.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

2008 Nero Award Goes to Jonathan Santlofer

Last night the Wolfe Pack presented the Nero Award to Jonathan Santlofer for Anatomy of Fear (William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers). The Nero Award is presented each year to an author for the best American Mystery written in the tradition of Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe Stories. It was presented at the Black Orchid Banquet in New York City.

The Black Orchid Novella Award is presented jointly by The Wolfe Pack and Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine to celebrate the Novella format popularized by Rex Stout. This year's winner is Michael Nethercott for O'NELLIGAN'S GLORY.

The Wolfe Pack, founded in 1977, is a forum to discuss, explore, and enjoy the 72 Nero Wolfe books and novellas written by Rex Stout. The organization promotes fellowship and extends friendship to those who enjoy these great literary works of mystery through a series of events, book discussions, and a journal devoted to the study of the genius detective, Nero Wolfe, and his intrepid assistant, Archie Goodwin. The organization has 450 members worldwide.

Congratulations, Jonathan!!!

Lee Goldberg

Lee Goldberg, Toast Master at Left Coast Crime in Hawaii (March 7-12, 2009) and author of the Monk novels, just sent some info about his latest books to IACW and I thought people would be very intersted.

"The latest Monk novel, MR. MONK IS MISERABLE, is out today and picks up right where MR. MONK GOES TO GERMANY left off. It's set in Paris, which makes it a very personal book for me. My wife Valerie is French, born and raised in Paris, and we go there each year to visit my inlaws. On our last visit, I took our 13-year-old daughter Maddie to The Catacombs. She took one look at the millions of bones stacked underground and said "Can you imagine Monk here?" Yes, I could. We both could. And from that moment on, I couldn't stop seeing Paris through Adrian Monk's eyes. And neither could she, which turned this book into sort of a family affair.

As familiar as I am with Paris, I still had to do a lot of research into the sewer system and, on a subsequent trip, scout locations for the book. The hotel, the restaurants, and just about every other setting in the book actually exists. I also named many of the characters after my French family and friends.

My next Monk book, MR. MONK AND THE DIRTY COP, comes out in July 2009 and takes place back in San Francisco, where I also feel a special connection. I was born and raised in the Bay Area. After two books "on the road," it was nice to be home again. The book I am working on now, MR. MONK IN TROUBLE, will be out in December 2009 and is set in San Francisco and California's gold country.

I haven't decided yet what comes after that. All I know is that, whatever those next two books are, they will be published after the TV series ends.

How will Monk change after the finale of the TV show? I have no idea yet...or how those changes will impact future books. I look forward to finding out!"

Want to spend some quality time with Lee? He's an incredible raconteur. Register for Left Coast Crime and join the group at an amazing Unconventional Convention!